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Review: La Papierre Letter Writing Stationary

17 Jun

As I’ve had new people to write to recently, I quickly ran out of the pretty stationary I had. Fortunately, when looking for penpals and found Penpal of the Week, I also discovered that Julie and Denise, the ladies who run the site, also design and sell their own stationary for letter writers at La Papierre. I snapped up a couple of designs, and I was so happy with what I bought, I thought I would share my thoughts with you.

La Papierre offers a wide range of beautiful stationary, I had a hard time choosing which to buy! But my eye was immediately drawn to A Cup of Galaxy, and I kept coming back to it:

A Cup of Galaxy Letter Writing Stationary from La Papierre

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Request a Letter

22 May
Request a Letter

Earlier this year I wrote about how I wanted to write more letters in 2016. I’ve started off well, as after writing that post, it was read by Caoimhe, saying we should write to each other. Now I have a penpal for the first time in years, and it’s brilliant! I’ve loved getting to know Caoimhe better, and discovering just how much we have in common. I’m really grateful for our friendship!

But I’ve not been writing as many letters this year as I hoped, and I really want to write more. Because of this I thought I would try something. I’ve been inspired by Gemma Stone‘s 10,000 Love Letters Project and a post on Penpal of the Week, where Julie offers to write 36 letters to whoever wants them. So I thought I would do the same.

Would you like me to write you a letter?

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Their Scribbles: Interviewing Gracie Latter of Almost Amazing Grace

6 May
Their Scribbles

At the beginning of April, I created my first Blog Reading post, where I discussed some of my favourite writers. Inspired by that post, I thought it would be fascinating for us all to get to know various writers better, and the idea for the interview series Their Scribbles was born.

First up, I’m really excited to have the wonderful Gracie Latter on the blog today. Gracie – or Gracie Actually as you might know her on social media – writes for her blog, Almost Amazing Grace, and as a regular contributor to The Olive Fox, Zusterschap and Oh No, Not Another Blogger. Gracie is also the Peer Editor at The Mix, and an Events Correspondant for Maximum Pop! Books. Gracie is an incredible writer, an inspiring person, and also a lovely lady, and I’m thrilled Gracie is my first interviewee for Their Scribbles.

Almost Amazing Grace

Gracie LatterWhen did you first start Almost Amazing Grace and why? What can readers expect when visiting your blog?

When I first started a blog, it was Bracelets and Bangles (this URL still exists. When I changed to Almost Amazing Grace and moved everything over, I kept it as I simply couldn’t let it go!). I was sixteen and between lessons at college, desperate to get my thoughts out there and have my voice heard by someone, anyone! Even if at the time all I wanted to write about was the guy I fancied in Drama class, or how hard my homework was getting as I approached AS Level exams…

I like to think that since then I’ve matured massively. These days I still share a lot of personal info, stories and opinions, but also I write about books I’ve been lucky enough to receive from publishers or have stumbled upon in shops. While I was doing my Creative Writing degree I realised that by sharing snippets of my creative assignments on my blog I could get feedback from loads of people, and that was always amazing and so helpful. I’ve continued doing that! Continue reading

Finding a Safe Space

10 Mar
Finding a Safe Space

I wanted to update you guys with something that has been happening lately. I’ve become a Team Member of Safe Space, a blog for young women talking about the various issues we face, personally and in society. It’s a blog that is very feminist, with focuses on mental health, body image, sex and relationships, and life in general. It’s a place for real honesty, and a place where judgement is not allowed.

Safe Space has been huge for me. There are eight of us on the team who are also book bloggers, and so we all bring our own followers and friends to Safe Space. I reach more people at Safe Space than I do at this blog, and I think the knowledge that people quite a few people will be reading what I write has inspired me to come up with so many ideas of things to write about. I write for Jo’s Scribbles with the idea that it doesn’t matter how few people read, if what I write reaches one person and they find it entertaining or helpful, then that’s good enough. But the larger audience, and having seven other ladies to bounce ideas off of, has led to ideas a-plenty. Continue reading

A Year For Writing Letters

5 Jan
A Year for Writing Letters

It’s 2016, and a lot of people are making New Year’s Resolutions, to finally start something they’ve always wanted to, or to give up bad habits. It’s not exactly a resolution, but I’ve decided I want to write more letters.

When I was younger, I collected stamps. Well, I still do, but it’s less frequest that I sit down with my album and add the stamps I’ve collected (Shh, stamps are like minature pieces of art). As a young teenager, I was a member of the now defunct Royal Mail Children’s The Collectors Club. The Collector’s Club had a penpal scheme, through which I formed a friendship that lasted into my early twenties, and discovered a love of handwritten letters. Continue reading

Give Yourself the Chance

26 Jun
Give Yourself the Chance

A few weeks back, I made my first tentative steps to having my words published on other platforms. There was a call on Twitter for writers to get in contact to be added to the contributors list for The Coven, a website for and by women. On a nervous whim, I got in contact. I put myself out there, with the risk of rejection, and it scared me. I didn’t really think I would get anywhere. Sure, I have a degree in Journalism and run a fairly successful book blog, but I don’t really have the right kind of experience. I was sure I would get a “Thank you, but no thank you.” I would anxiously open my email, dreading the “no” I was sure would come.

It didn’t. After reading the information about myself I provided, the editor was happy to add me to the Contributors list, and soon after I received an email for content submissions for the next month. I couldn’t believe it. I was sure I’d get a no.

I pitched an idea inspired by the theme, but again expecting a no. But the editor liked my pitch, and made some suggestions. It was accepted! I really was surprised by the good luck seeming to be coming my way. I thought about what I wanted to say, I made a lot of notes, and I wrote my piece. Once I was happy with it, I sent it off, hopeful and excited.

I got a response within a day or two, and my heart sank. The editor felt it needed “a bit of a rewrite”. My self-doubt that left me anxious before was nothing compared to how my low self-esteem in regards to my abilities treated me.

My piece was crap. Of course, it was. Why did I think I could do this? Why did I even bother? There were suggestions, but there’s no way I could do what they were asking. I knew it all along. I wasn’t good enough.

Except… that wasn’t true. I wallowed in my dejection for a while, and then re-read the email. There were some positive points! And the criticism I received was constructive, of course; indicators of how to refocus my writing, rework it, and improve.

Over the next few days, I thought about the points made. Brainstormed where I could take it, coming up with discarding ideas, thinking about word count and what ideas would help me meet it. I worked on it. I took advantage of the tools I had available. I rewrote it. And I submitted it.

I don’t know if it’ll will be fine this time round, if I’ll still need to work on it, or if they decide not to go with it. The point is I’m still giving it a go.

Don’t give in to self-doubt.

Be brave, and take that first step to moving towards what you want.

It might not be easy: there might be obstacles along the way, and it’s possible you might stumble at the first hurdle, but don’t give up.

Keep going, keep trying.

You deserve to give yourself the chance.


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